Nation this week
Dr Kamal Hossain has said he does not have any desire to run for election or to hold any public office, despite being the leader of an alliance of political parties outside the ruling coalition, including the BNP. Rather he and the alliance formed under him would work to ensure the integrity of the electoral process and revive democracy. He also said the Special Powers Act, 1974 and other "black laws" needed to be scrapped and the Jatiya Oikyafront should include the task in its goals. "I am happy to clarify, for those who have been making virulent, baseless and persistent personal attacks on me, that I have no desire to be a candidate in any election or seek any public office," he said at a press conference at the Jatiya Press Club this week.
On October 13, the BNP and three other political parties, including the Gono Forum, formally launched Jatiya Oikyafront, which unveiled an 11-point goals and promised sweeping reforms in governance, if voted to power. Meanwhile Barrister Mainul Hosein, who also joined the alliance, was ultimately arrested in a defamation case filed with a Rangpur court, for hurling a misogynist insult at journalist Masuda Bhatti during a television talkshow.
The High Court ordered Impact Masudul Hoque Memorial Community Health Centre in Chuadanga and IRIS Enterprise, a supplier, to pay Tk 10 lakh in compensation to each of the 17 victims who lost their eyesight following cataract surgery at a health camp last March. Impact Health Centre, the organiser of the health camp, and IRIS, which provided medical supplies containing bacteria that caused the tragedy, were directed to share the burden of compensation equally. The court also asked Impact to bear the expenses of treatment for life to the victims along with three others who suffered infections.
Besides, the court asked for the formation of a seven-member body, led by a senior official (additional secretary) of the health ministry, to look into the frequent occurrence of such incidents, where patients are made to undergo additional suffering, sometimes even loss of life, at the hands of doctors in hospitals or clinics due to wrong treatment.
Dhaka University will retake tests of 18,500 students who passed the "Gha" unit (Faculty of Social Science) admission test for the 2018/19 academic session that became marred by question leak allegations. A meeting of DU Dean Committee took the decision in the face of days of protest by teachers and students of the university, and calls for the influential dean of the faculty, Dr Sadeka Halim, to resign. Dhaka University eventually admitted the allegations were correct and said the question paper of "Gha" Unit admission test was leaked via "digital forgery".
The admission process will automatically be put on hold and test schedule and further details will be announced from the authorities later. "Though an allegation of question leak had surfaced, it's the university authorities' success that they nabbed the perpetrators. We will dig deep into the matter to identify others," Vice-chancellor Professor Akhtaruzzaman said. .
Bangladesh's imports grew by more than 6 percent in the first two months of the current fiscal, on the back of a record 105 percent increase in oil imports. The actual import in terms of settlement of letters of credit (LCs) rose to $ 8.52 billion during the July-August period of FY19 from $ 8.04 billion in the same period of the previous fiscal, according to the central bank's latest statistics. But opening of LCs, generally known as import orders, decreased only slightly to $10.02 billion in the first two months of FY19 from $10.13 billion in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal. Import of petroleum products rose to $ 791.68 million from $386.06 million.
The rising trend in fuel oil prices in the global market has pushed up the overall import payment obligations during the period under review, the central banker explained. Besides, oil-based power plants have also boosted the import of petroleum products. On the other hand, import of capital machinery or industrial equipment used in the production process came down to $ 787.08 million from $825.02 million.
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